Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 22.djvu/139

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129
LITERARY NOTICES.

ous orders and multifarious proofs as it now stands before the scientific mind of the age. But we cordially commend Mr. Wright's book as a well-intentioned and helpful contribution, in good temper, to some of the most interesting problems of the time.

Physiognomy: A Practical and Scientific Treatise. By Mary Olmstead Stanton, San Francisco. Printed for the Author: San Francisco News Company. Pp. 351. Price, $3.00.

The author counts herself among the disciples of Spencer and Haeckel. Many scientific men have already accepted the idea that the brain is not the sole and exclusive mental organ; but that the nervous ganglia and plexuses of human and animal organisms may also exhibit or assist in the production of mental manifestations. The author goes beyond this, and expresses the belief that "it has been reserved for a woman, however, to carry their observations and research to a finality," and that she has been able to extend and make still more comprehensive the location of mental faculties, and to prove "that the viscera also are instrumental in exhibiting mental phenomena." The signs of character in the face are reviewed in their various aspects, and the treatment of the subject is continued in chapters on the "Origin and Evolution of the Organs," "Signs of Health and Disease in the Physiognomy," "Hygiene," and "Heredity."

Statistics of the Population of the United States by States, Counties, and Minor Civil Divisions. Compiled, from the Returns of the Tenth Census, by Francis A. Walker. Washington: Government Printing-Office. Pp. lxxxix 375. With numerous Plates.

This is one of the most interesting of the many volumes of the census reports. It presents in intelligible groupings, made more plain by graphic aids, all the diversified classes of facts which are brought to light in the final summing up of the reports of the census. First, the progress of the nation, from 1790 to 1880, is reviewed by decades; then are given the facts bearing upon the settled area in 1880; statistics of cities, and urban population; the determination and position of the center of population; the elements of the population, as classified by sex, race, and native or foreign birth; and the influence of physical features (topography, temperature, rain-fall, latitude, and longitude) on population. Under these heads are presented the conclusions arrived at, with minute explanations of the reasoning and processes by which the conclusions have been reached; and the statements are supplemented by tables giving the detailed figures of statistics on which the processes and conclusions are based.

The Wave-Lengths of some of the Principal Fraunhofer Lines of the Solar Spectrum. By T. C. Mendenhall, Ph. D., Professor of Experimental Physics in Tokio Daigaku. Tokio, Japan: Published by the University. Pp. 27.

The University of Tokio having received from the makers, early in 1880, an excellent and powerful spectrometer and some superior diffraction gratings, measurements of the wave-lengths were made during the unusually clear weather of November and December. The results, which show a fairly close agreement with those of Angstrom's measurements, do not require a particular notice, except in so far as the work illustrates the extent to which the most remote lines of Western scientific investigation are observed and followed up in the distant empire of Japan.

Report upon Experiments and Investigations to develop a System of Submarine Mines for defending the Harbors of the United States. By Lieutenant Colonel Henry L. Abbott, Corps of Engineers. Washington: Government Printing-Office. Pp. 444, with Twenty-seven Plates.

The author of this report was associated with the Board of Engineers for Fortifications, in May, 1869, for the purpose of investigating and experimenting on the subject to which the report relates. The results of the experiments were embodied in a manual for the use of the Engineer troops in their practical duties as submarine miners, which was completed in 1877, and forms the basis of instruction at the School of Submarine Mining at Willet's Point. The present report embodies a full account of the general researches undertaken in the investigations, including the unsuccessful